Blue Velvet Cupcakes with Vanilla Buttercream
mmm.is for mommy
- 2 cups sugar
- 2 sticks (1 cup) unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 2 eggs, at room temperature
- 1 tbsp cocoa powder
- 1 tbsp Wilton royal blue gel colour (I had not quite enough, so I mixed in some cornflower blue too)
- 1/2 tsp Wilton violet food gel colour
- 2 1/2 cups cake/pastry flour
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 cup buttermilk
- 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1 tbsp vinegar
- Vanilla Buttercream
- 2 cups (1 lb or 4 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 1/2 tsp salt
- approx 1 1/2 lbs icing sugar (give it a few pulses in a food processor or manually sift)
- 1/4 cup heavy cream/coffee cream/blend
- 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
In a mixing bowl, cream the sugar and butter, mix until light and fluffy. Add the eggs 1 at a time and mix well after each addition. Mix cocoa and food colorings together to form a paste, and then add to sugar mixture, beating well.
Pulse together flour and salt in food processor (or by hand by sifting). Add flour mixture to the creamed mixture alternately with buttermilk. Mix in vanilla. In a small bowl, combine baking soda and vinegar and fold into mixture, just to combine.
Spoon batter into 24 cupcake tins lined with paper liners.
Bake at 350 degrees for 25-30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Remove from oven and cool completely before frosting.
Normally you would top a Velvet cake or cupcake (whether red, blue, green, pink, purple…and on and on) with cream cheese frosting, but that can a bit too soft to pipe, so I decided to go with a vanilla buttercream instead. In hindsight, cream cheese probably would have been totally fine. I ended up makingWAYtoo much frosting than what I needed for 24 cupcakes though as I normally use the large star tip. For Cookie Monster I used the Wilton 233 tip, the grass tip, which uses a lot less frosting.
My Vanilla Buttercream
2 cups (1 lb or 4 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/2 tsp salt
approx 1 1/2 lbs icing sugar (give it a few pulses in a food processor or manually sift)
1/4 cup heavy cream/coffee cream/blend
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
Cream butter in KitchenAid mixer using the whisk attachment. Add in salt, vanilla and about 1/4 of sifted icing sugar at a time, adding in the cream alternately the same way. Let mix on med-high speed for 4 or 5 minutes, if the frosting looks too soft for your needs, add some more icing sugar a bit at a time. Conversely, if it looks too stiff, add a tiny bit more cream.
Seeing that this batch was for Cookie Monster’s fur, I added approximately 2 tsp of Wilton sky blue gel colour at the beginning, and it was well blended in by the time the frosting was ready.
To frost the cupcakes, I used the Wilton 233 (grass) tip, which I learned is very forgiving. If C was just a wee bit older, these would have been fantastic for her to help me with. I made Cookie Monster’s eyes from Wilton white candy melting wafers and brown Smarties stuck to them with some buttercream (make sure that you make them googly-eyed!). Cookie’s mouth was simply (and fittingly) a mini chocolate chip cookie pressed in at the end :)